Until recently Woolmore was a one-form entry primary school hidden from view in a somewhat dilapidated Victorian building. In February 2015 (after a long wait and a campaign concluding with turning around a vote in a council meeting) we eventually moved into our brand new 4 storey, 3FE (ultimately) school, beside the Blackwall Tunnel in Poplar, East London. We currently
have 360 pupils with the majority of families originating from Bangladesh and Somaliland.
Increasingly our population includes families from India, Brazil, Italy and Poland.
All children can achieve success.
This belief is at the very core of our being and we are forensic in our approach to high standards. For each child at Woolmore we ask ‘What would it take?’ and then we do it. We talk, we listen, we check, we make new plans, we tweak them, and we make sure that what we are doing works. Relentless focus and high energy are what it takes to be a successful school and we give it our all. Our pupils achieve success: starting from generally low entry points our pupils consistently meet and, in most cases exceed, national expectations
across the board, in terms of attainment and progress. We are very proud of this and, of course, seek continuous improvement.
Pupils cannot be successful without great teachers: teachers with a determination and
the skills and talents to enable pupils to love learning and to succeed. Recruiting teachers
is a challenge; recruiting and keeping the best is even harder. As with all things at Woolmore we know where we are going and we are relentless in our direction of travel. We invest in our teachers, we expect them to work hard (and they do) and we offer support, guidance, mentoring and the opportunities and freedom to grow. As an expanding school we are excited about growing our leaders of the future.
Leadership and the Woolmore Way
‘The headteacher has high expectations for the school and leads with determination and a relentless pursuit of excellence.’ Ofsted July 2015.
I feel privileged to say that I have been headteacher at Woolmore for more than eighteen years. I started teaching in the eighties and realised that I had found my vocation. It really is the greatest profession although certainly not for the faint-hearted. I have a dedicated team of people around me to enable our vision to grow and become reality.There is a very strong ethos and culture of
how we do things and 3 layers of values: for pupils, for staff and for leaders, including
governors. We are all proud to be doing it ‘The Woolmore Way’.
Our community and partnership
‘She is relentless in her ambition for all in the community. ’Ofsted 2015
We work in partnership with our parents to ensure the best for every child. It’s not always plain sailing: when we moved to the new school we had to manage change and expectations. Although I had met with parents each step of the way to discuss the upcoming changes, the reality was a shock. The parents had campaigned for a new school and then they were faced with this modern school with the hall on the first floor and access control.
This wasn’t like the ‘old’ Woolmore. We cancelled the staff meeting and brought in the
parents instead. Once they saw the beautiful new environment and the opportunities on
offer to their children they felt a whole lot better. We managed the situation and our
parents support and trust us, they know they will be listened to and that we will only ever
do what is best for their child. We have dedicated governors who have worked with us over many years. They support, challenge, get involved and they really care. We appreciate them. We work
closely with local schools linking in with a Teaching School, shared training and networking for school improvement.
How do we do it?
No tricks, no fads, no bandwagons; investing
in teachers, relentless pursuit of great teaching that impacts, picking up when children slip behind, inspiring hearts and minds, celebrating success, always on the
school improvement journey. That’s the Woolmore Way. A parent governor wrote to a teacher at the end of last year thanking him for being a great teacher for her son and providing extra
experiences, (including entering a Londonwide ‘If I were Prime Minister’ competition – which he won!). In the email she wrote ‘you enable the children to do more, be more…’ A teacher added the obvious next word: